Greetings from El Paso!
We had a difficult travel day to get to El Paso – the toughest city in the conference for the Rainiers to get to. And on this trip we are going there for four games and then coming right back home, which makes two tough travel days in a very short period: Wednesday and Sunday.
Today the team bus left Cheney Stadium at 3:15 AM, and we arrived at the hotel in El Paso at 1:00 PM. Enough time for a nap, or maybe lunch, before heading to the ballpark for tonight’s game.
Manager Pat Listach does as much as he can to allow the players to get extra rest on tough travel days like today. He’ll cancel batting practice, and allow the players to arrive at the park later than normal.
A lot of us load up on coffee before the game. I’ll be pounding caffeine before the pregame show starts, and so will many of the players and coaches.
Once you get through the first game of the series, it’s smooth sailing: you go back to the hotel, close the curtains super-tight so no light can get in, and sleep as long as possible.
The stadium in El Paso is terrific, so once everyone recovers from the no-sleep Wednesday, it’ll be an enjoyable trip.
Yesterday: Albuquerque scored three runs on four consecutive two-out hits in the fourth inning, and that was all they needed to beat Tacoma on Tuesday afternoon, 3-2. Tyler Smith‘s two-run homer in the third inning was the entire Rainiers offense. Tacoma did, as usual, threaten in the ninth by putting two runners on base but this time they couldn’t finish the comeback.
Roster Move: Tacoma adds Forrest Snow from Double-A Jackson today. August 3rd? Talk about being late for the season.
Today: Tacoma (64-46-1) at El Paso (62-49), 6:05 (Pacific).
Opponent Affiliation: San Diego Padres.
Season Series: Tacoma leads, 8-4.
Starting Pitchers: RHP Sam Gaviglio (0-0, 3.26) at LHP Frank Garces (4-5, 4.88)
Hot Rainiers: Daniel Robertson has hit safely in 11 of his last 13 games, going 17-for-53… Tyler Smith is 6-for-12 over the last three games… Zach Shank has walked eight times in his last eight games.
Look Out For: Nick Noonan has a five-game hitting streak coming into tonight’s game… PCL home run leader Hunter Renfroe does a lot of damage in his home ballpark, where he is batting .391 with 15 homers. He’s hitting .249 with 11 homers on the road.
Broadcast: The pregame show starts at 5:50 on South Sound Sports 850 AM. The broadcast also streams online via the TuneIn app – just click here.
PCL Scoreboard: Follow all Pacific Coast League games in real-time with links to Gameday screens right here.
- The Rainiers game story is on how one bad inning – really one stretch of four batters – torpedoed Tacoma.
- The Mariners had a miracle comeback and beat Boston, 5-4. While there were many contributors, Robinson Cano‘s three-run homer was the game-winning hit.
- Bob Dutton’s Mariners Notebook includes information on Thursday’s starting pitcher, and injury updates.
- John McGrath commended the Mariners for keeping it interesting into August.
PCL Game Reports:
- Fresno’s Mike Hauschild pitched the Grizzlies to a 4-1 win at Reno, and there was a change in the standings: Fresno moved into second place, 3.5 games behind Tacoma. Reno remains four games back.
- Las Vegas stayed alive in the Pac-South race by edging El Paso, 3-2. The win salvaged a series split with the division leaders, and Vegas is 6.5 games behind the Chihuahuas.
- Chris Stratton pitched Sacramento to a 6-2 win over Salt Lake, as Travis Ishikawa hit another homer. And that headline…
- Usually 1-0 games are beautifully played, but apparently Omaha’s 1-0 win over Iowa yesterday was quite ugly.
- Matt Williams had the game-winning hit in the top of the tenth inning as Memphis beat Round Rock, 8-7.
- Colorado Springs lost a prospect and gained a prospect. New outfielder Lewis Brinson went 4-for-4 win a 7-3 win over Oklahoma City.
- Raul Alcantara and Nashville finished a four-game road sweep with a 5-1 win at New Orleans last night.